Texas House passes bill banning vaccination of foster children

May 17, 2017

State Rep. Gene Wu, D-Houston, voted no on a motion to table an amendment to House Bill 39, a Child Protective Services reform bill in the Texas House on May 10, 2017.
Credit Bob Daemmerich / Texas Tribune

The Texas House of Representatives has passed a measure that would prevent doctors from vaccinating foster children—even when those vaccinations would prevent them from later getting cervical cancer.

As The Dallas Morning News reports, the bill is the work of a far-right contingent in the state House, known as the Freedom Caucus. Supporters of the bill say the measure would prevent the state from superseding the wishes of parents who don’t believe in vaccinations, in cases where parents are falsely accused or children are taken by mistake.

The bill’s author, Rep. Bill Zedler, R-Arlington, was quoted as saying, “No vaccine cures a disease.”

The debate grew heated when Rep. Sarah Davis, a cancer survivor, challenged Zedler and his fellow Freedom Caucusers. The HPV vaccine has been proven to provide close to 100% protection against cervical pre-cancers.